It's that time of the year again! I will be highlighting some of the players I would like the Patriots to pick in this year's draft. We have already highlighted some players and reported some private work outs, so be sure to follow us for updates! On the right hand side of this page, the "2016 NFL Draft" category will keep track of all potential Patriots players.
To put it bluntly, Will Fuller is my favorite receiver in this draft. At 6 feet, 186 pounds, he is a bit undersized, but makes up for it with a great vertical leap (33.5 inches), and blazing speed (4.32 40-yard dash). As the Notre Dame Irish team MVP, Fuller had 62 receptions for 1,258 yards and 14 touchdowns in 2015. With incredible speed, Fuller is a vertical threat and a home run waiting to happen. Last season, 27% of his catches were for 25+ yards.
However, as an outside threat, Fuller is undersized and can be rattled by bigger defenders. Fuller has the tendency to catch passes with his body, rather than his hands, which contributes to a lot of drops (watch the game between the Irish and Boston College at Fenway). Additionally, as a vertical threat, Fuller is not experienced running in the middle of the field and leaving himself susceptible to big hits. Because of this, Fuller will not be a receiver that catches 10-12 reception per game, but he can still contribute.
For the Patriots, landing Fuller would be a slam dunk. The Patriots have been looking for an outside threat since Randy Moss, and Fuller has the potential to be better than Brandon Lloyd or Brandon LaFell. With the additions of Nate Washington, Chris Hogan and Martellus Bennett, the Patriots' offense is quickly coming together, but a rookie with a ton of upside could help this team in the long-run. The Atlanta Falcons are said to be extremely interested in Fuller, but it is unlikely that he will be taken in the first round. The Falcons own the #50 overall pick, so if the Patriots want to trade up in the second round to draft Fuller, he will most likely be there.